Symonds Yat on the River Wye
The Romans were in Gloucestershire from 80 AD until well into the 4th Century. Normans had their influence on local architecture, nine hundred years later. The Cotswold wool trade, which flourished in the 18th Century, resulted in many fine Mills being built in the valleys. These Mills constructed for 'fulling' and processing cloth, derived their power from mill wheels driven by the Cotswold streams. Mill owners grew rich on the proceeds of the industry and these rich land owners built fine houses and manors in the county.
It is against this background that our forefathers' surviving
handiwork is seen. It includes such fine work as the font
at Ozleworth Church and the tithe barn at Ashleworth. The tithe
barns in Gloucestershire are some of the most lovely functional
buildings ever devised in England. Then there are
the varying styles of Owlpen Old Manor, Hidcote House and Sezingcote.
Each, in its way, is a felicitous expression of the
Cotswold builder's art.
Above all, there is the intricate beauty of the great Cotswold
churches, the uncluttered wintry loveliness of Northleach porch;
the soaring elaboration of Gloucester Cathedral;
the magnificence of Chipping Campden and Cirencester.
From these and many other works, by known and unknown hands,
the Cotswold tradition was built up.
Our inheritance is a landscape that is a living work of art.
I hope the pictures on this website convey this notion to the viewer and that visitors will come from all over the World to see our local gems of visual delight. The skill and judgement of centuries past have created a priceless heritage and the challenge of the new Millennium is to cherish and preserve the harmony and beauty that is encapsulated in the Cotswolds.